INDIANAPOLIS – Last week, Rams Senior Director of Sports Medicine and Performance Reggie Scott spoke during a panel conversation at Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science looking to inspire young African Americans.
This week, he'll have another platform to help continue to do the same.
One of few African Americans in the NFL to hold his role, Scott on Monday was sworn in as the president of the Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society (PFATS).
"To be fortunate enough to have the job that I have, and be fortunate enough to be named president, and to be able to talk to some young African American men and women (at that panel conversation) that are coming in, at the end of the day I think it just gives hope," Scott told theRams.com. "That's all it is. It's nothing I'm telling them that's going to make everything different, but the fact that you have somebody that you can say, 'Yeah, there is hope, I can be that.' Especially in the sports arena, right? I think me growing up and a lot of us growing up, athletes was all we saw, we didn't see behind the trenches. So I think for the fact that somebody actually can see somebody behind the trenches that is of that same nationality or race, it's inspiring and can give hope to somebody. You can never be sad at that, that's always a good deal."
PFATS presidents are elected by their peers and serve five-year terms for the organization – one year as president-elect, three years as active president and one year as past president. During that first year, the past president teaches the president-elect about the presence they get on the 13-member board until they are sworn in, and for Scott, that was Los Angeles Chargers Director of Football/Medical Services James Collins.
That 13-member board communicates with all 158 trainers across the league and educates them on various initiatives inside and outside the NFL, including advocating for good player healthcare and giving back to the youth involved in athletic training at the high school level. The organization also has an educational foundation which it conducts research through.
"We're advocates for taking care of athletes at the club level, and also advocates for what I call internal and external," Scott said. "Internally, taking care of the membership, making sure we're harnessing a good environment for our membership to develop and grow, and making sure we're taking care of them. Externally, making sure we're educating ourselves and giving back to the community."
Scott would know what that takes. In 2015, the Rams received the Ed Block Courage Award for NFL Athletic Training Staff of the Year through a vote by the PFATS membership. It recognizes one NFL athletic training staff annually for their distinguished service to their club, community, and athletic training profession, according to the PFATS website.
"He's been instrumental in the success that's gone on from a training room perspective in his leadership long before I got here," McVay said.
Coincidentally, one of Scott's key responsibilities as PFATS' president is staying on top of the league's health and safety initiatives and working closely with NFL Chief Medical Officer Dr. Allen Sills, Executive Vice President of Healthy and Safety Jeff Miller and other higher-ups involved in those areas.
"Any initiatives that come down from them, I'm their segue to make sure we get this to the athletic trainers in the NFL and making sure that stuff gets implemented," Scott said.
Early on, Scott wants to focus on membership enhancements in order to provide the best coordinated athlete care and increase community involvement. He aims to accomplish that by opening up communication lines to help build relationships.
"Internal is the most passionate part to me," Scott said.
For Scott, the role of PFATS president is a "humbling" honor.
"The first word that comes to mind is it's very humbling," Scott said. "Really humbling that your peers helped kind of drive that boat to be the PFATS president. Also, there's a lot of accountability there that I need to make sure I push the envelope best I can. I look at it as, now it's something I've got to do to get PFATS to the point where we want to get to. So there's some accountability for sure that comes to my mind, that I want to do the best I can for them."